Dubai launches new programme to further support family businesses

Dubai has launched a new programme aimed at sustaining family businesses, an important component of the local economy, Sheikh Maktoum Bin Mohammed, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, announced on Tuesday.

The Dubai Family Business Management Programme will empower new family business leaders to ensure continuity and survive generational changes.

“The programme aims to empower the second tier of leaders in family businesses to ensure their continuity, smooth succession of ownership and management, and solidify their global presence,” the deputy ruler said on X, formerly known as Twitter. 

“Family businesses are integral to Dubai’s economic success, and by empowering them, we strive to achieve the goals outlined in economic cities globally.”

The initiative is part of the Dubai Centre for Family Businesses, which operates under the umbrella of Dubai Chambers. It has been launched in partnership with Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Leadership Development.

“The programme is an extension of a series of programmes and plans aimed at supporting family businesses, whose success indicates the growth of Dubai’s business community,” Sheikh Maktoum also said in a statement.

Backbone of economy

Around 90% of companies in the private sector in the UAE are owned by families, according to a report of the UAE Ministry of Economy. Over 70% of the workers in the private sector are employed in family businesses. In Dubai, family firms contribute 40% of the emirate’s gross domestic product (GDP).

Earlier this year, Dubai Chambers launched the Dubai Centre for Family Businesses to educate family-owned companies on leadership transition, succession planning and growth.

According to Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, President and CEO of Dubai Chambers, businesses that are run by families are a “key partner” of Dubai’s plans of comprehensive and sustainable development.

“This [management] programme plays a vital role in preparing second-tier competencies capable of boosting business competitiveness in Dubai, further reinforcing its position as a favoured destination for businesses,” Lootah said on Tuesday.

The programme will help second-tier leaders enhance their global profile, raise their awareness of local and international regulations, enhance corporate governance and sustainability systems, develop global trade strategies and investments and promote a culture of social responsibility in family businesses.




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